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WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Conference of Mayors President Philadelphia (PA) Mayor Michael Nutter issued the following statement after an announcement in Philadelphia today by Attorney General Holder about COPS Hiring Grants being awarded to U.S. Cities:
“The COPS Program has been a top priority for the U.S. Conference of Mayors for nearly two decades.
“The organization worked in close partnership with the Clinton Administration to shape and advocate passage of the 1994 crime bill which authorized the program. Through the Conference, mayors and police chiefs worked tirelessly to secure passage of the crime bill, coming to Washington on numerous occasions and lobbying their representatives at home. After the legislation was enacted Conference leaders worked with the Attorney General and key officials at the Justice Department to ensure that the COPS program was implemented in a quick and efficient manner, which in fact occurred.
“Since 1994 the Conference has made full and adequate funding of the COPS program a top funding priority. The Action Agenda on Crime developed by mayors and police chiefs in Philadelphia in 2008 and presented by the Conference to President Obama called for reinvigoration of the COPS program. That happened when $1 billion in hiring grants was included in the 2009 Recovery Act. The organization continues to advocate for adequate funding of the COPS program each year.
“Over the years, and especially in the last three years, the Conference has worked in close partnership with the COPS Office. We have seen the Office implement its programs in a common-sense, effective, and efficient manner. Its Director and staff have demonstrated a consistent willingness to work with cities and other local governments to ensure that they are able to take advantage of COPS grants and to make maximum use of the funds they receive. Today’s announcement shows that this excellence continues.”